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Alliance Commends Bipartisan Introduction of Ensuring Pathways to Innovative Cures Act

Published February 2, 2024

United States Capitol Building with American flag.

Yesterday, Reps. Greg Murphy (R-NC), Don Davis (D-NC), and Brett Guthrie (R-KY) introduced H.R. 7174, the Ensuring Pathways to Innovative Cures (EPIC) Act, which would remedy the Inflation Reduction Act’s disparate treatment of small-molecule drugs and biologics. Alliance for Aging Research President and CEO Susan Peschin, MHS, released the following statement:

The Alliance commends Reps. Murphy, Davis, and Guthrie for introducing the EPIC Act. This bipartisan legislation would go a long way toward protecting older Americans’ access to the most effective and convenient treatment options.

The Inflation Reduction Act exempted FDA-approved small-molecule drugs from price controls for just nine years, while giving large-molecule ‘biologics’ 13 years of protection. This disparity is already leading some manufacturers to deprioritize small-molecule research.

The impact of the policy will disproportionately impact individuals for whom small molecules are more likely to have a therapeutic impact. Small-molecule drugs can cross the blood-brain barrier, making them critical treatment options for central nervous system disorders like Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.[1] [2] [3]A sustained drop in small-molecule development will leave these patient populations with fewer effective therapies in the future.

There is an important place for both biologics and small molecules in treating disease. However, small molecules, which are typically administered in pill form, are often preferred by older adults based on cost and lessened need to travel outside the home for administration.   Creating disincentives for the development of one category of drugs over another without any medical or scientific rationale does not make sense.”

We must take action to fix unintended impacts and misaligned incentives. The Alliance urges Congress to pass the EPIC Act.




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